SPRINGFIELD, MO. (KY3) – A severe shortage of spare parts is preventing heating and air conditioning companies from meeting the demands of this time of year.
As temperatures continue to rise, your air conditioner will go into high gear, making it a challenge to stay cool. But that’s even more difficult if your AC device isn’t working properly.
Andrew Crocker is a homeowner in Springfield and can’t believe how much the heat can affect utilities.
“We have an air conditioner that’s pretty old, not even that old,” said Crocker. “But it might as well be ancient to fight the heat wave we’re dealing with right now.”
He says that even a slightly older device stands out.
“Even if you only get 70 degrees, it takes a lot longer than it used to,” he explained.
Rich Callahan of Air Services Heating and Cooling says they’re used to being busy this time of year, but it’s been busier than usual lately.
“We run until 9:10 am, 11 am trying to make calls,” Callahan said.
And to top it all off, another obstacle. Parts are scarce, which makes it harder to keep up with demand.
“Not only did we have a tight share, but refrigerant prices have more than quadrupled this year,” said Callahan.
A lack of key parts puts HVAC repairs on hold. The biggest flaw, evaporator coils.
“Before, every other year, we had 100 and a few coils ready to use,” said Callahan. “And now, it’s only week after week, we’re getting parts and hopefully we can get them in.”
Vaporizer coils are just the beginning of the list.
“We had a shortage of blower motors, condenser fan motors, just simple capacitors that we lacked.”
Supervisor Brett Callahan says the shortage is so great that it has created new jobs.
“A technician’s only job now is to retrieve parts,” he said. “That means three or four different manufacturers are calling to say can we get this part, can we fit this part into this device?”
With such a low supply, getting a repair in time can sometimes be a matter of luck.
“Well, they had to replace part of our air conditioning and they said they only had one of those parts,” said Crocker. “So we were very lucky that we were able to benefit from it back then.”
While Crocker has been fortunate to meet his needs, some customers currently have underperforming appliances or no air conditioning at all.
“We currently have 28 customers waiting for parts to be shipped,” said Callahan. “In the past few years there have probably been one or two waiting for parts.”
Then what’s the best way to avoid being without AC?
“Make sure you change your filters,” Callahan said. “Make sure that we or another company have it adjusted and cleaned. To try to avoid unjustified stress on this device. “
“Because the last thing you want to be is in the middle of a heatwave discussing how many thousands of dollars you want to spend on a new air conditioner,” said Crocker.
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